Closing Efficiency

Successful annual audit with these Business Analytics

The Business Analytics Closing Efficiency analytics examines four dimensions that are significant for successfully improving your efficiency in annual financial statements:

Strategy & Governance

  • Closing Strategy
  • Governance


  • Organizational Structure
  • Centralization


  • Process Management
  • Process Control Closing
  • Consolidation

IT & Digitization

  • Strategy
  • System Landscape
  • Data Model

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Ever shorter publication deadlines and increasing demands concerning the quality of the financial statements while ensuring the greatest possible cost efficiency pose an enormous challenge for financial organizations. Use this Business Analytics to swiftly assess the maturity of your financial statements in terms of time, cost, and quality.

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Good to know

How to save time and money on the annual financial statement audit

The audit of the annual financial statements is an important milestone for companies in the business cycle. An efficient and reliable audit of the annual financial statements is of utmost importance in gaining the trust of investors and stakeholders. However, the auditing process for annual financial statements can be expensive and time consuming, especially if the accounting and finance departments are having difficulties preparing the financial statements quickly and accurately. This is why the concept of "Fast Close" arose as a solution to minimize the costs and effort of the audit of the annual financial statements. In this article you will learn how your company can improve its closing efficiency and lower the cost of finance without sacrificing informational quality.

High closing efficiency plays a decisive role for companies wishing to perform a financial statement audit quickly, efficiently and accurately. Companies that are capable of optimizing their financial organization in addition to simply speeding up the process of preparing the financial statements can also assist auditors with their work apart from solely saving time and money. This accelerates the audit process overall. High closing efficiency has other benefits in addition to this, including:

  • Faster audits of annual financial statements: high closing efficiency also facilitates the collaboration between companies and auditors. Companies that have their financial systems and processes in order can quickly provide auditors easy access to needed information.
  • Improved internal controls: another advantage of high closing efficiency is the improvement of internal controls. Companies that work towards fast and precise audits of financial statements must ensure that their financial systems and processes are efficient and monitored.

Best practices for targeted optimization of financial statement audits include Quality Close and Fast Close when preparing annual reports. Quality Close refers to the quality of the closing process including the efficacy of processes, tools and systems as well as the quality of employees' education and experience. Fast Close annual reporting refers to the quick preparation of financial reports and financial statements at the end of the financial year while maintaining the existing level of quality. These approaches can be extended to the overall strategy of a lean finance organization, which aims for integrative optimization of the organizational structure and workflows in accounting.

There are various factors that can influence the closing efficiency of the annual financial statement audit. There are four dimensions that are important here:

  • Strategy and governance: the strategy and governance of companies can have a big effect on closing efficiency. A company with a clear strategy and governance will be able to structure its financial processes more efficiently and to improve cooperation between various departments.
  • Organization: the company's operating model also plays an important role in closing efficiency. For a finance department to have a clearly defined target operating model (TOM) it needs clear roles and responsibilities. In this way, the organization will be capable of preparing the financial statements more efficiently and improving cooperation with the auditors.
  • Processes: the quality of financial processes can have a big effect on closing efficiency. Companies that have effective processes for preparing financial statements will be in a position to prepare them faster and with greater precision.
  • Benchmarking: transparent process flows and delineated areas of responsibility enable benchmarking of the entire finance function and its processes with other finance functions in selected peer groups.
  • IT and digitalization: the use of IT systems and digital tools can significantly improve closing efficiency. Automated processes and systems can help reduce errors and speed up the closing process. The usage of digital tools for cooperation between various departments can also improve communication and facilitate cooperation.

It is important to keep in mind that these factors are connected and can influence each other. Companies that wish to improve their closing efficiency should therefore take all these factors into consideration and develop an integrated strategy to optimize their financial processes. Receive a preview of your closing efficiency based on the four dimensions with our business analytics. Try out our business analytics tools free of charge and receive an initial overview of the efficiency of your annual financial statement audit.